As a teenager in Fermanagh, I reflect on the Twelfth of July celebrations,and I was again disappointed to see that the overwhelmingly peaceful Twelfth was marred by loyalist rioting in north Belfast.
I was again angered and saddened to hear that this irresponsible rioting left eight police officers injured.
This violence has a deeply devastating impact on Northern Ireland’s reputation and future.
But we all have to realise that this avoidable rioting is being caused by the ‘ill-thought’ decisions of the Parades Commission.
Yet again this year more restrictions were being placed on peaceful parades right across Northern Ireland.
The Parades Commission are an unelected quango allegedly accountable to no-one for the appalling and unjustified decisions that they make.
The Parades Commission continue to undermine Orangemen by breaching their fundamental rights.
These include the right of free association and the right of assembly.
They also include freedom of religious belief, free speech, the right to live in peace and the right of cultural expression.
To conclude, the ‘anti Parades’ Commission have once again demonstrated its real aim: “To end all Orange Order Parades in Northern Ireland”.
I now call upon the Secretary of State to end the irresponsible decision-making of the Parades Commission by removing all future restrictions on parades.
I also call on her to ask Parades commissioners for their resignation.
Jonathan Hall, Aged 16, Fivemiletown